Economic conference focuses on entrepreneurial practices

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Kaushalendra Singh –
SALALAH, April 26 –
A wide range of national and international topics ranging from energy consumption, foreign direct investment, education, trade structure, development budget, Islamic finance to tourism, were discussed on the opening day of International Conference on Economic Development and Diversification (ICEDD) 2017.
The two-day conference opened at the College of Applied Sciences (CAS) Salalah under the auspices of Ahmed bin Hassan al Dheeb, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, in the presence of Dr Abdullah bin Mohammed al Sarmi, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Higher Education.
Present on the occasion were senior government officials, international experts, policymakers, academics, research scholars and successful entrepreneurs.
After a ceremonial opening of the conference, keynote speakers Prof Kevin George Hindle, CEO of Mentor Entrepreneurship Group, Australia; and Dr Shahid al Balushi, Assistant Dean for Postgraduate Studies and Research, College of Economics and Political Sciences at Sultan Qaboos University (SQU), threw light on entrepreneurial practices and integrated logistics system respectively.
Prof Kevin focused on a broad issue of ‘Comprehensive system for regional economic development,’ while Dr Shahid put stress on ‘The impact of integrated logistics system to country’s economic development and diversification’.
Prof Kevin, in his keynote speech, put stress on community factor in building an atmosphere for entrepreneurship.
His speech revolved around innovation, entrepreneurship, and opportunity evaluation and its implications on national development.
Dr Shahid remained focused on logistics development as a major factor for economic development. He put stress on efficient trade infrastructure to economic growth, strategic geopolitical location and logistics as a gateway to the market. He also put emphasis on strong political stability and connectivity with international shipping lines, road networks, air space, pipelines etc.
Earlier, Dr Ahmed Abdel Rahman Balkhair, Conference Chair and Dean CAS Salalah, said it was honour for the college to host ICEDD 2017, which is a pioneering effort to bring together academicians and practitioners in the field of economic development.
“I am sure that the conference will provide an opportunity to the researchers from different parts of the world to share their research work, promote collaborations and facilitate future research work in the relevant areas of economic development and diversification,” he said.
The conference attracted experts from Australia, Canada, India, Pakistan and Malaysia. There were 60 paper entries out of which 35 were selected for the conference. All the participants expressed happiness over the level of the conference and their opportunity to interact with the experts from outside.
“We get to know the trends and works being done in our field as also the scope of cooperation with local educational institutions. The horizon widens and such conferences create a platform for further discussions and knowledge sharing, which ultimately benefits the college and the students,” said Dr Viju Matthew, a faculty member of CAS Salalah.
The conference papers were selected under eight themes of Diversification for economic development and growth; Business and management; Entrepreneurship and SME’s growth; Emerging trends in accounting and finance; Tourism, hospitality and events; ICT and economic diversification; Cutting edge technologies; and Media and Communication development.
The ICEDD 2017 will conclude on Thursday with a summary and recommendations after series of presentations, poster activities, workshops and tutorials.